An app that knows what you are eating

In the Wednesday visit to the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, EFPL, the epidemiologist Marcel Salathé presented his recent works regarding some nutrition issues. Inspired by the use of social media, such as Twitter and Facebook, to detect a disease outbreak or the adverse effects of a new medicine, he is creating the app “My Food Repo”. The technology, still in development, is able to analyse pictures of food and, with simple questions, calculate the number of calories and other relevant information. Based on these data, professor Salathé intends to develop a system of nutritional evaluation based on pictures taken by patients of their meals over a period of one or two weeks. The app could replace the current self-reported questionnaires that rely on the memory and precision of details provided by patients. There are some adjustments to make, but “My Food Repo” could be released within the next year and a half.

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